Make Generosity a Habit

Apr 27, 2021    Warren Halstrom

Make Generosity a Habit
by Warren Halstrom, Worship Pastor

I started out self-employed. A young musician is not often burdened with the responsibility of income. It was fairly easy, therefore, to skirt over the issue of giving for me. My pay was always irregular, and never for sure, so my pattern of giving was inconsistent.

Then I began my first full-time Music Pastor job. Ten percent of the pastor’s salaries were deducted and given to the local denomination as a matter of policy in this church. I didn’t have a choice but to become a tither. In some ways, this was good for me and good for the body of Christ. It wasn’t, however, developmental in my understanding and heart toward giving.

As I moved from that position, I was then in the more common position of receiving all of my net pay and consequently faced the responsibility of tithing 10% plus giving. While I had a heart to give, the reality of a low bank account balance and a growing family often overcame my good intentions. At times, I built up a rather hefty amount of money owed to God. Over the years, I was constantly trying to pay the tithe that I owed.
Then, in the midst of my research into generosity, I made a strategic decision. I would go back to something that had worked quite well for me. I arranged for my giving to be automatically deducted from my salary each paycheck. This time, however, it was not forced upon me. It was my intention to make sure that my heart to be generous toward God not be thwarted by unforeseen expenses. The decision to automatically pay my tithe first brings me great joy. This way I know that the first fruits of my income are His and in the hands of His church before I could even think of spending it on a dishwasher or on Disney.

I still have plenty of room for growth and do earnestly look forward to following God’s direction in taking new bold steps in generous giving. Are there steps toward habitual giving that you could take? Take a few minutes to pray for the courage to take bold steps toward becoming the kind of giver that doesn’t find themselves “behind” in their obligations toward God.